Neymar hates to lose – Tuchel backs PSG star after final flashpoint

Thomas Tuchel admires how much Neymar hates to lose as the controversy over his post-Coupe de France final confrontation continues.

Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel (C) speaks to Neymar before extra time during French Cup final between Rennes and PSG), on April 27, 2019 at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, outside Pari.   -  Getty Images

Neymar has received the backing of Paris Saint-Germain head coach Thomas Tuchel after his reaction to Saturday's Coupe de France final loss continued to overshadow the build-up to Tuesday's Ligue 1 outing against Montpellier. 

The Brazil superstar completed 120 minutes on his first start since suffering a foot injury in January, setting up Dani Alves' spectacular opener against Rennes, scoring the second and netting in the penalty shoot-out after a 2-2 draw. 

Christopher Nkunku missed from the spot to hand Rennes its first major honour since 1971 and Neymar's confrontation with a supporter when PSG went up the Stade de France steps to collect its runners-up medals stole post-match headlines. 

READ | Mbappe sees red as PSG's Coupe de France dominance comes to an end

He appeared to bat a phone away from the fan, who was filming the PSG team, before a verbal exchange. Neymar apologised for the incident in an Instagram post saying: "Did I act wrong? Yes, but no one can remain indifferent."

 

RMC reported the world's most expensive player could face an eight-game suspension from the French Football Federation, but Tuchel was bullish in support of his man.

"I know what Ney meant, it's not something we have to talk about outside, only inside," he said on Monday. 

"There are players who like to win and players who hate to lose. Everyone loves to win but it takes more to hate to lose. 

"Neymar played 120 minutes, I was surprised at his performance. He scored, made a decisive pass and scored the fifth penalty. Almost all our dangerous actions were by him."

A season that promised much will end with PSG as Ligue 1 champion but amid fresh reports of dressing-room discontent following a chastening Champions League last-16 exit at the hands of Manchester United. 

READ | 'They lack more ear than mouth' – Neymar criticises young PSG team-mates

The club's usual domestic cup mastery also deserted it in Tuchel's first campaign at the helm. 

"At PSG we have the goal of winning everything, including the Champions League," said the former Borussia Dortmund boss. 

"But you have to be careful, a team like Juventus have not won it for [23] years. 

"We need to talk in the dressing room to grow and improve. But we have to do it between us. We can talk and have different opinions, but we have to do it inside [the dressing room]." 

Thiago Silva sat out the Coupe de France final through injury and will be absent once more for the trip to the Stade de la Mosson. 

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